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What! Did the Hand then of the Potter shake?

The kick wheel turns against
the spondees of her feet
clop-clop—upon the floor:
amorphous clay shines
like a seal’s skin. We are
uncarved blocks, says the Tao.
Hum-hum, says the wheel.
And I am Yahweh at dust,
she says, her hands tucked
and carving out the belly
of a pot. Process not
progress, is there love
in this? The god I wish
existed, she says, does not
exist. Washing off the gray
that cakes her skin makes touch
almost new again, almost
like today…. It is finished,
says the crackle glaze.
I am a little world made
uncunningly, says the pot,
I am clay fashioned by clay.
Outside, the azure sky
like a knife through November.
Says the kiln, in its red
meditation: Amen.

The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

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